Image credit: The Cooperative Group
From communities demanding more wind turbines to a Government-backed plan to spread income from renewables to surrounding residents, we've seen a lot of stories lately about harnessing renewables not just to create clean energy, but to also build wealth in our communities. Yet the idea is not new—and I've just come across a great video profiling a pioneering example of cooperative, community-based renewable energy. If only there were more like it.
The Cooperative Group Does It Again
Earlier today I posted a video from The Cooperative Group about urban beekeeping in London. But this was just one example of the ethical business giant's push for community-based solutions to poverty, climate change and more.
Community Wind Funds Local schools
The video below outlines the Coop's banking arm's involvement in funding and supporting Baywind Energy Cooperative. Built in 1996, the wind farm was the first community-owned wind installation in the UK, and generates around 10,000MWh of electricity each year—enough to power around 30,000 homes. In addition to providing an income and clean energy for its members, the initiative also channels funds into educational visits and environmental books for local schools.
The Coop's Ad Campaign Creates Impetus for More Change
Now that's clean energy! It's also worth noting that while the Cooperative Group has been funding such projects for years, it is good to see them stepping up and shouting more openly about their commitments. As my friend and colleague Jerry Stifelman wrote in his piece on greenhushing, it's not enough to do good anymore—we've got to tell others so we can inspire broader change.
More on Community-Based Renewable Energy
Residents Demand More Wind Turbines
Community Wind Funds Spread Wealth from Renewables
Sydney Energy Cooperative: Fun in the Sun